Saturday, 26 November 2016

The Holes of The Labyrinth.


There are so many things to remember, I forget.

Even the memories I misplace.

Some of these………

Are in this street.

This street is narrow - you can lean from the window on one side and touch someone reaching from the window on the other - though this should only be done from the second floor, where the buildings lean together.

They were not built this way, but with the years they have become tired and can no longer support their own importance.

At the moment someone is leaning out of a window; this person is holding a key that they are about to drop to someone standing in the street below. This person is not ready to catch the key, as they are not looking - they are talking to someone standing in the shadows.

These shadows are not sinister, they are just shadows.

In a moment the person for whom the key is destined, will stop talking, will look up, and with a practised gesture remove their hat. This is the signal for the person above to drop the key, which will fall -  almost in slow motion - into the hat.

It will seem like slow motion not because this is a film, but because it is mid-summer, when there seems to be more time for everything; more time to talk to someone in the shadows, more time to remove your hat and more time for a key to fall.

Though you may wonder why someone is wearing a hat in mid-summer.

The reason, is that this person no longer has much hair, and the hat hides this.

Besides, the person considers himself more attractive with a hat.

Yes, this person is a man.

This hat is blue.

And this key is silver.

The key is old, older than the man who has caught it in the hat; He takes it in his right hand, a hand that is older than the hat, and he places it into the lock of the door. The door and the lock are the oldest things here, except the street.

This street was here before everything, before the need for a door.

The door is opening now and silence spills out from inside, into the street. It should be noisy, eager to escape into freedom, but it says nothing. Maybe if you were attentive you heard a sigh.

The man closes the door, and starts to climb the stairs that until now were hidden by the door. There are many stairs. The man is not fit, but neither is he in a hurry. He has most of the rest of the night to reach the top of the stairs and follow the corridor to his room.

The stairs are not fit either, they are suffering from ancient use.

He doesn’t know the number of his room yet; this will be given to him when he returns the key to the person who dropped it. She is still leaning out of the window, watching her silence drift along the street.

Yes, the key dropper is a woman.

She has blue eyes.

This is a coincidence; her eyes and the man’s hat are the same colour.

Neither of them will mention this, though both of them will notice.

“Your room is number 4”. She will say this to the man when he hands her the key.

“Thank you”. He will say this to the woman when she hands him the number.

The room is small, but it is has everything the man needs. A chest of drawers where he can place his bag, or which he can fill with the contents of the bag; a simple wooden chair where he can sit; a sink where he can shave, and a bed where he can sleep.

The man will need a shave in the morning when he wakes.

But now he does not need a shave, neither does he need to sleep; he wants to go back outside. Yes, it means that he must climb the stairs again later - when he returns - but this time he will have his own key to open the door, as there is one waiting for him on the small table that is the only other furniture in the room. The key is sitting on top of a towel that the woman folded and placed here earlier.

As the man opens the street door for a second time nothing leaves except him, and nothing enters except the cat.

This cat lives with the woman.

The cat’s name is Croupinette.

The cat used to live across the street with the neighbours, but the neighbour bought a dog and the cat moved away.

The cat used to be called Alexander.

Croupinette had to wait for the man to leave; as a cat, it cannot catch a key.

It has no hat.

The man places his hat on his head as he closes the door; he doesn’t see the cat.

Instead, he looks along the street.

One way leads back to the small square where the bar that sells cake is getting ready to close for the night; the man has already been there, and though the cake was good he turns the other way, eager to see where the street leads.

It leads to the Cathedral.

This Cathedral is as old as the street; they arrived in this place together.

The man stands at the end of the street, looking across the sudden open space, towards the steps that lead to the cathedral’s door. The unexpected end to the narrowness has surprised him and he is unsure how to continue.

He is eventually helped forward by the calls of the people walking down the cathedral steps, as they look for their friends waiting in the small market that fills the space to the side of the man, opposite the steps of the cathedral.

He leaves the harbour of the street’s narrowness and looses himself amongst the stalls of this market.

This market sells age; old things that people have lost or things lost by old people.

Some are no longer what they once were.

Neither the people, nor the things.

On one stall the man sees a wooden box; when he picks it up he finds that it is not a box but a frame.

A frame that is box-like, as it has a glass top.

The man looks into the box that is a frame.

It is a game.

There is a silver ball and a labyrinth for the ball to follow.

There are holes in the labyrinth that the ball will fall down if the man tries to roll the ball through the labyrinth, and if the man is not careful with his rolling.

The man likes the rolling.

He tries again, each time the ball falls.

He smiles.

“How much is this?” He says this to the man who owns the box of labyrinth and holes.

“Not much.” The owner says to the man who will buy the box of labyrinth and holes.

The man will take the holes back to the room where the woman with the blue eyes waits with her cat that has two names.

They will share the labyrinth.


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